Pregnancy, BPD and smoking

“I went out there and was met with a nightmare vision: my girlfriend, with her pregnant belly and a lit cigarette in her mouth.”

The other day I was hanging out with a new friend. He was telling me that his longest relationship had been with a BPD woman. He told me that no one has the power to withstand the negativity of someone with BPD. “These people are survivors,” he said. “They will put on an emotional show, but if they see that it doesn’t work, they will retract and go into survival mode.”

He was telling me that I shouldn’t buy an apartment with my girlfriend out of guilt. He said that I didn’t owe her anything. He said that I obviously don’t feel like doing it, so I shouldn’t let myself be bullied into it.

On the other hand I do feel like I owe something, since I’m having a baby with her.

It was the night before my girlfriend would sign the papers to sell her own apartment, and my friend was telling me that the universe was giving me this chance and that it wasn’t a coincidence that we were sitting there talking exactly then.

My girlfriend called and said she had lost the keys to the apartment and asked if I was home. I wanted to ask her to come join us but she said she was so tired and she just needed to get in now and sleep. I said I would pay and come. But my friend kept talking very convincingly. I stayed for a little bit more and then a little bit more. In the end I stayed quite long.

When I did get a taxi and came home, she was waiting outside the building. I had told her to wait in the cafe beside the building but she had waited on the street instead. She was shaking with rage.

We went upstairs and she went into hysterics. I realised it was my fault for being late, but also that I’m completely mind-scrambled from this situation. She shouted and threw things around. Then she covered her pregnant belly and went out, saying that she was going to buy cigarettes.

If this had been during the first two years of the relationship I would have run after her. But now I know she feeds on that, and that it is a power game. I didn’t believe that she would really buy cigarettes. So I stayed home. She came home about 20 minutes later only holding a water bottle. I breathed a sigh of relief.

But she continued the drama, with lots of negative energy (but less overt violence than she used to because she knows that my new policy is to leave when she gets really violent. Suffice it to say I didn’t sleep much that night, and the next day she told me to move out. I didn’t take that very seriously, because she’s told me this hundreds of times.

She didn’t answer messages that day. When I came home in the evening, she started a new argument. I started packing my bag to go down to the local cafe and do a bit of work.

When I had finished packing my bag, I noticed that it was very quiet. The light was on on the balcony. I hadn’t seen it on for months, since before we found out she was pregnant, and she stopped smoking. I opened the door to the balcony. There she was, looking out onto the street. But I was certain she couldn’t be smoking. Still, it smelt like tobacco smoke. I went out there and was met with a nightmare vision: my girlfriend, with her pregnant belly and a lit cigarette in her mouth.

I thought about taking the cigarette from her, but as a borderline she has a certain investment in causing accidents. And I didn’t want to risk a scuffle with her in her condition on the balcony. But I found the pack of cigarettes and her lighter, and pushed them over the edge so they fell down on the street. Then I went into the kitchen and poured out all the alcohol I could find. Then I made her promise not to smoke again. She first protested violently then reluctantly agreed.

The fact that she can be so vehement and then flip over to the opposite opinion illustrates the point made in a previous post, Borderlines without Boundaries.





Borderlines without Boundaries

Borderlines are experts at walking all over your boundaries. My relationship has taught me that. But a few days ago I had an epiphany: they don’t have any boundaries themselves.

Since I discovered that my pregnant girlfriend has Borderline Personality Disorder, my incessant reading has been transforming me into an expert on personality disorders.

My research on the subject has led me to understand why it is that my writing slowed down until it ground to a halt; why it is that my income went down; why it is that I lost so much sleep I became depressed.

I was letting my girlfriend walk all over me. It wasn’t that I never protested; it was just that her breaches of my boundaries were so frequent and insistent it became the new normal.

This does not mean that I’m a victim; far from it: I attracted her into my life, and it is obvious that I have lessons to learn from her just as she has things to learn from me.

The number one lesson that I have to learn is about personal boundaries.

It is pretty clear that I had and to some extent still have issues with boundaries. For instance, why did I allow her to shout at me for 48 hours straight (no kidding)? I did tell her to stop several times, but I never left the house. I thought that she needed me. As I sit here reading this, my rationalisations at the time are incredible to me. One thing is for certain, though: there is a part of my own psychology that has worked to enable the abusive behaviour of a severely personality disordered individual.

I would never stand for such an episode today; that is why it doesn’t happen anymore. I used to think that I needed to console her and make her see that I am not that bad man that she was saying I was. It was quite an epiphany when I discovered that she wasn’t interested in all that; the only thing that worked was simply to leave or show that I was willing to leave when she became violent.

This flies in the face of my upbringing, where I learnt that many men are abusive and don’t care about anything but drinking and cheating on their wives, and that to be a good guy you need to really listen to your woman to make sure you don’t mess with her emotions. Well I tried it, and it doesn’t work – not even a little bit. Even if, as I write these words, there is a lingering doubt inside me. Because part of me is still attached to this delusion. I’ll talk about this in a future blog post.

The thing is, when it comes to borderlines, they will do whatever you allow them to do. It’s kind of like a river. It won’t help to explain to the water that it has no reason to be angry with you, or that it will damage you if it floods your city; the only thing that works is for your dam to be watertight.

I have started acting in accordance with this insight, and it feels like I have made many gains. The latest one may seem insignificant, and it certainly is a small thing, but I think it is an important milestone: I insisted on keeping my laminated list of daily exercises in plain view in our place. She would otherwise always remove it to some unknown place after I had used it, and I would have to look for it. I explained that I wanted it in clear view because I want to see it and be reminded to do my daily exercises. She fought me as I knew she would; but I was calm and unyielding through the storm and in the end I prevailed. This was a couple of days ago, and she hasn’t touched the list since. It is a significant victory because otherwise the apartment is 99% decorated with her stuff.

A year ago I would never have dared to insist on something like this, and I wouldn’t have felt it was worth it. This is because at that time she would have thrown a ten-hour fit about it. Now that I know I will not accept such a fit, I am able to work on getting my life back.

I have to fight for every cubic centimetre of air, and I have to be ever ready to defend my boundaries. But it’s worth it: this is my life, and it is the only life I have. Perhaps if I continue to reconquer my space I will be able to go back to writing books.

So now I have talked about my issues with boundaries. But what about hers? Why do I say that borderlines don’t have boundaries?

Well, it was a discovery I made a few days ago. We were talking about the purchase of a new and bigger home. I was trying to keep the discussion rational, and I insisted through her tears that emotions don’t have a place in a discussion about property transactions. I was marvelling at hearing myself talking like that; it wasn’t long ago that her tears would have convinced me to take responsibility for the mortgage while allowing her to be the sole owner of the new place.

While caught in her emotional storm I somehow found the strength and clarity to tell her how concerned I am by the whole Borderline situation while having a baby on the way. Of course she took it as an attack and got extremely angry and started shouting and hurling insults. But I calmly insisted. She said everything she could possibly say, including how disappointed she was with me and that the whole Borderline thing was something I was saying to hurt her. I explained that I didn’t want to hurt her, which was why I had held back and had read about it silently, but that it was only fair that I told her what I was thinking. I said that tackling psychological issues should be the number one priority before the baby is born. I’m almost sure she broke up with me, but I can’t remember. She’s broken up with me hundreds of times. The main point was that she was extremely angry and opposed to what I was saying.

But then towards the end of the next day she stopped sulking and said she had liked that I had stuck to my guns. A coupe of days later I texted her the number of a psychologist. She texted back less than a minute later to tell me she had made an appointment.

This was a mindf*ck to me: she had been so vehemently opposed to even talking about it, and now she was making an appointment with a psychologist.

There are a lot of insights to be gleaned from this. The world is not as we were taught. I will go deeper into this matter in Borderlines without Boundaries II.



Transurfing the Borderline Pendulum

A great deal has happened since my first post. I posted on Rollo Tomassi’s blog, The Rational Male, and one of the readers, an old hand in the Married Red Pill community, who goes under the name of SJF, started posting well-considered answers to my questions. Thus started our exchange of posts. Eventually he offered to mentor me on the red pill and my relationship situation. We started exchanging emails almost every day. It is of immense value to have such an exchange who comes from a completely different reality than my girlfriend, and who is able to shed some light on my situation and what I can expect.

SJF tuned me on to a book called Transurfing. About a week ago I finished the first volume, entitled The Space of Variations. In the book the author, Vadim Zeland, talks about the concept of the “pendulum”. A pendulum is a direction of thinking that may be associated with an organisation or company or religion or person or group of people or whatever. The point is that the pendulum controls its adherents’ way of thinking. It doesn’t really matter whether people think negatively or positively about the pendulum – as long as they think and especially feel something about it, it starts swinging more powerfully. It does so by drawing on its adherents and opponents’ energy. So as long as you can avoid having opinions or feelings about a pendulum, you can stay out of its grasp.

After I had read about the pendulum, my girlfriend started one of her freakouts. By the way it started it looked like it was going to be very bad. When she started like this on previous occasions, it meant that her rage would last for several hours and be incredibly destructive. However this time instead of trying to make her stop by not responding or by agreeing or apologising, which I had tried so many times before without any effect, this time I focused on my inner state and not feeding the pendulum with anger or opinions about how unfair this all was or any other emotions or thoughts directed towards the pendulum. It worked like a charm. I was very surprised by how fast the pendulum fell through. I was able to talk about something else and direct the energy in a different direction, as soon as there was a lull in the pendulum’s swinging. Since I was being honest and not harbouring any hidden resentment about how unfair the situation was, or how harsh her words were, she followed my lead. We went back to a good feeling as if nothing had happened. Within five minutes a situation was diffused that would otherwise have lasted for hours and resulted in copious amounts of stress and lack of sleep.

Since then I have used the technique of making the pendulum fall through many times. I have also used the technique of extinguishing the pendulum. This is when you think about what it is the person really wants, and then visualise them in a situation where they have that. You see them really comfortable and at peace. This makes the person feel comfortable around you. After all, you’re sending nothing but good will towards them. It has to be for real, though – you can’t do it if you’re feeling resentment towards the swinging of the pendulum.

Countless situations have been diffused. We’ve been having some really good times together. I have to be prepared to be conscious and watch my actions as soon as a pendulum starts swinging between us; but the fact that I’ve been able to make the pendulum fall through consistently for the last days has made me feel that I have a new superpower.

My new superpower has turned out to be self-reinforcing: the fact that I’ve allowed the pendulum to fall through has meant that I have been getting more sleep. (Anyone who has lived with a borderline knows that your sleep suffers, since borderline rage usually explodes around bedtime.) The fact that I am getting more sleep means that the clouds of insomniac depression are lifting and I’m more able to be conscious in challenging situations.